So you’ve been chatting with this charming cutie online and you’ve decided to take your dating offline. You picked a great place, you’re all dressed up, maybe you went and got your hair or nails done; he shows up, you smile, he drives you to the restaurant, you sit down, and…. oh no.. you can’t think of anything to talk about.
Well, don’t worry. Dating Guide is here with your premium dating advice 😉 Here’s the thing – you can talk about anything you’d like! Just gauge his interest and if he don’t have anything to add to the topic, move on to something else or try asking him questions to get them engaged. And do your research! Familiarize yourself with his online dating profile beforehand so you know some of his interests or hobbies.
But that’s enough about that – this article is about what NOT to talk about. So here it is, the topics you should avoid on a first date:
1. Your Exes
“But she was really good with my kids, so it wasn’t all bad.” “Yeah, we still hang out sometimes. It ended on good terms.” “He was terrible in bed anyway. And never once bought me flowers.”
I know this one seems obvious, but… no. C’mon. Seriously? If you don’t even have common sense not to talk about your ex, maybe you need to hold off on the dating for a while. Your date should be the focus of the night. If you bring up an ex, your date will automatically assume you’re comparing them. And no matter which way you’re talking about your ex, you won’t be doing yourself any favors. If you’re talking about them in a good light, it seems like you’re not over them. And if you’re talking about them in a bad light, it seems like you can’t hold a relationship.
2. Imperfections and Improvements
“So, why did you drop out of college?” “It’s okay… I like my guy with a few extra pounds.” “You know, you would look better if…”
Think before you speak. If your comment is going to make your date self-conscious in any way, then shut your mouth. Even if you have the best of intentions, it’s only going to make the rest of the night really awkward. I know you may just be making a honest suggestion about something you think might help them out or make them look better, but all they’re going to think about for the rest of the night is that flaw.
3. Your F*%king Problems
“It just never ends! My boss is such a jerk.” “Well, it’s not easy when you only get to see your kids every other weekend.” “Yeah, I don’t get to go out much because my credit card is maxed out and Im behind on my rent.” “I just wish this rash would go away already!”
Everyone has problems. And if you’re dating someone, sure, those are going to come to light. But they have no place on a first date! You want the conversation to be light and fun, not put a downer on the whole night. For the most part, if you bring up a problem, your date is not going to know how to respond – either because they don’t have any experience with your situation, or they feel they don’t know you well enough to be giving you advice. Either way, it makes them feel uncomfortable. You also don’t want to come across as a victim. You want to portray yourself as strong, confident and independent. First impressions, people!
4. Your “Weird” Sense of Humor
“I’m not racist, I just think this is a great joke…” “Enough time has passed that I can find humor in the Holocaust.” “There’s just something about cripples that really makes me laugh.”
I don’t care how funny you think that joke is, or how many times you reiterate that you “are not” a racist, sexist, xenophobe, homophobe, or any of the other offensive -ists and -phobes; it’s offensive. Yes, people may laugh at your jokes, and yes, you may have found someone who has the same sick sense of humor as you, but a first date is not the time to test those waters! Keep any joking topical to what you’re already discussing, and at least somewhat light-hearted. Try anecdotes instead!
5. Polarizing Issues
“Every fetus has the right to live, even if it is the result of rape.” “Republicans are ruining this country!” “Do you like my New York Yankees tattoo??” “This week, a guy was gonna blindside Boston Rob, but he found out, and HE blindsided THAT guy, so now he’s on Redemption Island, and this other girl is trying to flirt with this guy cause she thinks it will keep her in the game, but he totally knows what she’s doing and… “
You know the kind of issues I’m talking about. The ones that are often only talked about from complete opposite ends of the spectrum. Some maybe be serious issues, like women’s rights, religion, or politics; but you’d be surprised how quickly someone will still back away if you start talking about reality television or your favorite football team (you know, if it isn’t THEIR favorite football team).
BUT, if you already know you both love Dancing With The Stars (who can blame you, Bill Nye will be on the next season) or you’re both animal rights activists, then by all means talk about these topics! But do remember you’re trying to get to know this person, and there’s more to both of you than this one thing you have in common.
And one last tip, for the gentlemen – PLEASE, do NOT mention that we smell nice. Yes, we put on this perfume for you, and yes, we hope you notice. But when someone says “You smell really good.” it triggers a flight instinct. It’s just a little bit to serial killer-y for us.